California-based artist Liz Huston makes gorgeous art inspired by philosophy, spirituality and mythology. She owns an art and curiosity shop where you can buy her work in LA (or online through the link below!) What follows is her latest work, her artist statement, and finally excepts from an interview with her. Leave a comment below and be sure to follow her on facebook!
I am fascinated with the way memory influences
how stories change and evolve over time.
This happens not because the facts change,
but because the inner orientation of the storyteller has.
Their perspective grows; expanding and contracting with experience.
The storyteller journeys us deep
into the timeless aspects of the human experience;
the kingdoms of love and loss, through grief, resolve, growth
and into the balance of purpose.
The human form, quite often a female form, is the storyteller within my art.
She comes to us in the nude, like a baby, with nothing to hide:
her full power and breadth still intact.
We see her as metaphor, as paradox embodied.
She has the power of flight, yet chooses to walk.
She has the ability to swim in great depths,
yet allows herself to be captured and tamed.
She teaches us, she moves through us,
and yet, she does not belong to us.
She is composed of images from the past and the present,
and thus inhabits multiple worlds at once.
This time traveler, this storyteller, unites the treads of time–
leading us home, bringing us back into ourselves.
Excerpts From LIZ HUSTON with Sue Molenda
Read the entire interview here: http://dwarfandgiant.com/books-of-blood-by-clive-barker-the-art-of-liz-huston/
Ms. Huston is part of the Spring Arts Collective, with a studio/gallery looking down into The Last Bookstore.
When Liz Huston greeted me in her shop above The Last Bookstore, I connected with electrifying joy. Her energy, her aura, is pure joy. Liz’s entire being is a work of art, and her skin a radiant “canvas” of tattoos. I could not resist buying a limited edition print, once she began quoting the poem that inspired it. “My Sweet, Crushed Angel” evoked thoughts of those I love whose dreams are dashed or out of reach. Liz and I shared a brief, delightful conversation and promised to complete our interview via email, as art admirers crowded into her Belle de Lune Gallery. Below is that interview.
Sue Molenda – Since you posted the 2010 video about how you create art, how has your process changed?
Liz Huston – I have learned to paint with acrylics, watercolors as well as learned digital painting, all of which I use in tandem with digital compositing. Switching between digital and tactile techniques makes the process much lengthier, but the results are so much richer!
SM – What influenced you to become a full time artist?
LH – I had a wonderful day job in the music industry, and was a photographer on the side, with a passion for traveling to New Orleans several times a year. In those travels I took hundreds (maybe thousands) of photos of New Orleans cemeteries with film, usually infrared film.
It was June 2005 when a friend told me people were using this new website (Lulu.com) to publish their own photo books. I suddenly knew I had to make a book of my New Orleans cemetery photographs, and it HAD to be on the shelves by Halloween of 2005. I worked furiously on the book. We even traveled to New Orleans in hot hot hot July, to get some last shots. I was driven by something I could not quantify. I felt something greater than myself pulling the book into existence at the same time I was pushing it.
As fate would have it, I uploaded that book to the printer the night before Hurricane Katrina made landfall in Louisiana. After seeing the awful devastation, I rewrote the introduction, vowing to use the book as a fundraiser, benefiting Habitat for Humanity and New Orleans-based Save Our Cemeteries. That book changed my life. I started doing events with my photography and book, a couple times a month. I started making jewelry and curiosities, and my traveling curiosity shop was born. Seven months after the book came out, I quit the job I loved in the music industry to do my traveling curiosity shop full time. From there I just kept following the path. That path led me to photomontage and eventually to where I am now!
SM – What resources did you use to learn about art and about the digital skills you use in creating art?
LH – I am a self taught artist. I’ve assisted photographic workshops, but was only a student in one weekend fashion lighting course. I learned photography through a passion for the medium, my local library, a homemade darkroom, and lots of artist & musician friends willing to experiment.
I learned entirely by doing. My first creation was a wedding portrait. I had eloped to New Orleans, and had no proper portraits. So, I made one, which I still sometimes exhibit, entitled “The Lovers”. After that, I wanted to create my own Tarot deck. The cards had taught me about symbolism. I subscribed to Photoshop magazine to learn new techniques, since in 2007-08, there weren’t many YouTube tutorials. It was an arduous process of trial and error, but in 16 months I had created 68 of the 72 cards. Unfortunately, my computer crashed, had to be rebuilt and I lost it all. The only piece I managed to recreate (because it was also on a disc) was “The Lovers”.
That loss, which destroyed me at the time, was a blessing in disguise. Those early pieces were my teachers. The work was rough, but the process taught me everything I needed to know to make the work I make now!
SM – Have you ever found, in your art, a catharsis for emotions that might not otherwise have found expression?
LH – I never would have survived the deep loss of my divorce without making art. Art lifted the pain out of me so I could view it in all its facets and eventually move forward. Art was my lifeboat and lifeline. It rescued me, and as the years have gone by, the art has taken me to brighter, calmer shores.
SM – Is your art the legacy you hope to leave, or have other aspirations tugged as mightily at your soul?
LH – Art is absolutely the legacy I wish to leave the world. I want to leave this place more beautiful than I found it, and I do that through my art.
SM – Is there anything else you would like to say — any nugget of wisdom you’d like to share?
LH – Please listen to the yearnings in your soul. Don’t follow another’s path, follow yours. The path may not be easy, but it will be worth it. Even if you have to do it in secret – follow your own breadcrumb trail. Making art is always challenging, and not always fun. But for me, it’s always right. Find your path, and follow it.